Director of MBCY & LiveGlobally / Master Teacher / Yoga Therapists
MA, M.ED, E-RYT-500, NCC (#87024), c-IAYT)
nina be is the Director of MindBody Centering Yoga, one of the first trauma-sensitive yoga techniques. She is a teacher, yoga therapist, certified counselor, mother and writer, who has been teaching, choreographing and designing cutting edge wellness programs internationally for over 40 years. Nina holds Master's degrees in Performing Arts/Dance. Theatre. Choreography (1979) and Psychology (2004), is a National Certified Counselor (NCC #8702), Certified Yoga Therapist (C-IATY) and Yoga Teacher (E-RYT-500). She is certified by Lisa Clark for EmbodiYoga (RYT-500) Dharma Mittra (RYT-500) Amy Weintraub in Lifeforce Yoga for Depression and Anxiety, by Richard Miller in iRest Yoga Nidra, and has received the 5 mindfulness trainings from Thich Nhat Hanh as a devoted student of applied mindfulness.
Nina's work spans from private yoga therapy sessions with individuals, families, athletes, performing artists, universities and corporations to MindBody Centering Yoga Teacher Trainings and Wellness Programs for corporations, universities and schools. MBCY uniquely blends methodologies and practices from somatic science, neurology, psychology, Hatha Raja Yoga, classical and contemporary dance techniques, and Restorative Yoga Nidra traditions. Master Teachers Thich Nhat Hanh, Dharma Mittra, Pema Chodron, Bonnie Baimbridge Cohen, Melanie Fawer, Sean Johnson of Wild Lotus, have inspired Nina to share their sacred teachings to help others lead centered peaceful lives.
Specialized RYT 200 & 300/500 hour Yoga Certification Programs of MindBody Centering Yoga are currently being offered at Global Breath Studio in Durham, North Carolina.
Nina's life purpose is defined as founder of LiveGlobally, (501(c)3) and her vision of advocating for children’s well-being, to quell global poverty through the practice of applied mindfulness in the tradition of social activist Thich Nhat Hanh. This growing community has supported the building of the Ingrid Children Education Centre, a school of excellence in the slums of Nairobi, Kenya, and Costa Rica (establishing girls health initiatives, women's entrepreneurial micro-bank projects), as well as collaborations with local Boys & Girls Clubs and prison programs in the US.
In order to satisfy her passionate curiosity, Nina has traveled to 38 states and 19 countries. She can be found at various Yoga Festivals around the country!
Lead Teacher / Student Liaison / Mindfulness Mentor
BART WESTDORP spent his childhood & adolescence in the Netherlands. He comes from a very linear, pragmatic culture, where the conventional truth of this life is analyzed from an empirical perspective. He uses his ongoing questioning and observation as tools to deepen his understanding of yogic practices.
Bart is a craftsman, artist, athlete, and teacher. When not practicing yoga, he can be found building or repairing just about anything. He likes to know how things work, from both mechanical and energetic perspectives.
In 2008, together with his father and uncle, he helped build the Body Center, Nina's first yoga studio in Raleigh. In 2013 he renovated the third floor of a 19th century warehouse in downtown Durham, transforming it into Global Breath Studio.
Bart began his spiritual journey over 25 years ago, when he decided to become a vegetarian. Without knowing the language yet, he started practicing many of the Yamas and Niyamas of Yoga.
Bart began his Asana practice about 15 years ago. His first class with Dharma Mittra in New York in 2009 ignited his true passion for Yoga, and that fall he entered his 200 hour MindBody Centering Yoga Teacher Training, with Nina Be as his mentor. He still considers this to be one of the best decisions he ever made.
After completing his training, Bart started teaching at the Body Center. He currently teaches at Global Breath Studio, and at several downtown Durham companies. He co-leads the MindBody Centering Yoga Immersions with Nina Be, and is available for private Mindfulness Coaching.
Bart has spent four retreats with his spiritual teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, who has informed his understanding of meditation & mindfulness.
In 2014 he completed his "Life Of A Yogi" teacher training with Dharma Mittra.
Lead Teacher / MBCY RYT 200 Instructor
When Bridget moved to Durham to begin working towards her PhD, she noticed that her practice - rooted in Ashtanga - felt lacking. Bridget walked (up the stairs) and through the doors of Global Breath and found her new home in MindBody Centering Yoga (MBCY). MBCY, its teachers and students, have become family for Bridget over the last 4 years and have helped her embody a more balanced practice and find mindful care of her being. She completed her 200-hour teacher training in MBCY in 2015 and continues her education in teaching as she works towards her RYT-500 as well as by teaching in the spring and summer 200-hour YTTs.
Bridget believes in living a life full of support, joy and gratitude and free from judgement. These feelings inform and guide her practice and teaching, which is heavily rooted in safety in innate intelligence. Bridget actively invests in her community by teaching yoga and mindfulness across the Triangle, including Global Breath Studio, Duke University, Durham Crisis Response Center and the Raleigh Correctional Center for Women. Bridget offers solo and group private sessions tailored specifically for your practice, whether you are just starting out in yoga or have been practicing for years.
When away from the mat, you can find Bridget in the lab working towards her PhD in biomedical engineering, which is focused on novel systems for breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.
MBCY RYT 200 Instructor
Jasmine Irvin, PhD, grew up practicing yoga and meditation in the triangle area. She received her certification in Hatha Raja yoga from the North Carolina School of Yoga with Chandra Om in 2005. Since that time she has taught yoga at various studios in the triangle area, as well as offering private instruction, and maintaining a personal practice. She earned her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in 2012, and incorporates mindfulness instruction, meditation, and movement practices into her therapeutic work. Jasmine has also had a life-long love of writing, and often uses creative journaling with her clients, and pursues her own writing projects as well. She brings her sensitivity and grounded nature to her work as a therapist and into her yoga instruction, and aims to help others increase their compassion for self and others. It is also deeply important to Jasmine that her classes be a safe place for everyone. She practices anti-racism and is an ally for all identity expressions. For more information, see: drjasmineirvin.com
Lead Teacher / MBCY RYT 200 Instructor
Rosco teachers with love and compassion for his students. He meets them where they are on their unique path to the light and seeks to help them with encouragement and yogic insight. He began studying and practicing yoga in 2011, working with college students and apprenticing in an Ashtanga-based yoga studio. He has shared yoga in a variety of flavors and continues to expand and innovate as a teacher to bring more soul healing to those drawn to his classes. He completed the MindBody Centering Yoga teacher training in 2016, which brought much healing to to his life and transformed the way he is now able to teach. He aspires to deepen his own practice of yoga, meditation and healing modalities and one day create an eco-healing center where he can lead retreats, trainings and ecological building workshops.
Lead Teacher / Children's Yoga Teacher
B.S, M.ED, E-RYT 200, RYT 500 & RCYT
Melanie has taught and worked with children with special needs and their families for over 25 years. Her passion for the healing nature of yoga has fired her interest in merging traditional education with the ancient yogic teachings and practices. Melanie believes that all people, even little ones are unique vibrational beings and yoga allows individuals to explore that inner space where there is a convergence of all potentiality. Melanie teaches workshops for educators on effective practices in the classroom and to help the educators themselves stay centered and available to their students. Melanie’s desire to help others ignites her passion to teach and invites others to find empowerment and healing in their life and to become mindful that each person is a soul with radiant beauty. Blessed by the teachings of Nina Be and Lisa Clark, she teaches yoga with an embodiment of the practice and the potential for the convergence of all possibilities. She is the founder and director of Converging Grace Children’s Yoga Teacher Training and teaches individual and group yoga classes.
Master Teacher / AYURVEDA INSTRUCTOR
Kathy’s love and appreciation for yoga began ten years ago after a very powerful yoga nidra session. Those fifteen minutes of bliss and deep relaxation set her on a path to study yoga, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and Ayurveda. After spending a weekend at Kripalu, she became even more interested in Ayurveda and completed a 200 hour Foundations of Ayurveda program. Slowly weaving in small Ayurvedic lifestyle and diet changes into her existing yoga practice, Kathy experienced the power of uniting the yoga and Ayurveda.
Kathy holds a Master’s degree in Leadership and Bachelors in Healthcare Management. As a member of “Corporate America”, she is passionate about finding ways to integrate the teachings of Yoga and Ayurveda into all aspects of life, both on and off the mat. In today’s hurry and scurry culture, she is convinced that incorporating these ancient practices in our daily lives allows us to show up better for ourselves, our loved ones, colleagues and to best serve our communities.
Kathy considers herself a lifelong student. She is currently enrolled in both the Ayurvedic Health Coach program and 300 hour Yoga and Ayurvedic Teacher Training program at the Kripalu School of Ayurveda. She is also a student in the 500 hour Integral Yoga Mentored Teacher Training Program at Satchidananda Ashram Yogaville. Her interests include Raja yoga, yoga for recovery, stress management, and pranayama.
You will find Kathy at the local farmers market picking up ingredients to create seasonal Ayurvedic dishes, in her rose garden, or enjoying outdoor practice (most often vying for mat space with her rescue dogs and cats).
Master Teacher / MBCY ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE INSTRUCTOR
PT, ScD, MA, & Master Teacher in Alexander Technique and Somatics
Glenna Batson, PT, ScD, MA is an independent movement educator with nearly four decades of teaching experience in somatically informed dance education. She was the first person to be trained by Irene Dowd in Ideokinesis in 1977. She is also an internationally recognized teacher of the Alexander Technique. She has been taught in various capacities for the American Dance Festival for 29 years. She is the author of Body and Mind in Motion: Dance and Neuroscience in Conversation and editor/contributor of Dance, Somatics and Spiritualities: Contemporary Sacred Narratives (both by University of Chicago Press, 2014). At 67 years young, she remains inspired by many inroads to embodied knowledge – contemplative to expressive, artistic to scientific. She lives in Durham.
Master Teacher / Herbal Medicine
Madelyn is an herbalist, musician, medicine crafter, artist, reiki practitioner, yogi, teacher, and student of Body Dialogue™ .
Madelyn began formally studying herbal medicine in 2012 at the Florida School of Holistic Living with Emily Ruff. This initial course propelled her into a period of deep study in the herbal healing community, and service to the land, attending herbal conferences and classes across the country, and living on and working with organic farms, eco-institutes, and environmentally conscious summer camps and homeschooling programs.
In 2016, Madelyn earned a certification in energetic clinical herbalism from Blue Otter School of Herbal Medicine with Karyn Sanders and Sarah Holmes.
Madelyn currently teaches the youth programs for both the Florida Herbal Conference and the Southeast Wise Women’s Herbal Conference in Western North Carolina. She works as a music teacher for an organization called MusicWorks, offering very low cost music classes to children in the West Asheville area. She sees clients in the Asheville, NC area and remotely over the phone.
Madelyn is a dedicated and passionate teacher and is happy to facilitate connection between people and plants whenever possible.
Master Teacher / MBCY Nada Yoga Instructor
ISABEL CASTELLVI is a versatile musician, sound healer, yogi, lover of plants, herbal medicine and Ayurveda, and student of life. Isabel share’s music with audiences all over the world and has performed, recorded and taught throughout North America, Europe, Asia, South and Central America and the Middle East. Inspired and informed by her travels and the chance to connect with beings around the globe through music Isabel aspires to share this insight of oneness. The experience of being able to play music for and with others, often without sharing a spoken language and cultural identity, has been deeply insightful about the power of sound energy speak to all of us, to open our hearts and unite us both in our bodies and in formless space.
Isabel has led workshops on nada yoga, toning/chanting and various forms of sound healing in New York, Chicago, Los Angelos, India and Nicaragua alongside masterful yoga teachers. In February 2015 she co-led a week long yogascape retreat with yoga teacher Dana Rizer in Nicaragua. There she was able to play live music for two classes each day, and in the evenings led meditations, sound healing workshops, chakra chanting and walking meditations on the beach. In the summer of 2014 season she was invited to be the Bard, musician in residence The Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY. There she had a chance to exchange with the community, compose new music, perform and teach workshops on creative improvisation, sound healing & nada yoga.
She currently studies North Indian Classical Music with renowned vocalist Sri. Rajyasree Ghosh in Kolkata, India and New York City. Isabel received a Bachelor’s in music performance at DePaul University and a Master's in the Contemporary Performance Program at Manhattan School of Music.
Master Teacher / MBCY ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE INSTRUCTOR
RACHEL NIKETOPOULOS is a certified instructor of the Alexander Technique, and has been teaching since 2002. She completed her MindBody Centering Yoga Teacher Training in the summer of 2010. Her passionate interest in conscious anatomy has inspired many MindBody Centering students to move out of holding and grasping and into greater fluidity and flexibility.
When not working at Global Breath, Rachel plays French horn in the North Carolina Symphony Orchestra — which she joined in 2005. She started playing the horn when she was 11, earned music degrees from the Universities of Iowa and Missouri in Kansas City, and has been playing horn professionally since 1989. Rachel is the 7th of 8 children, growing up in a house full of music, art, and bicycles. As an animal activist, especially for the pithy pitbull breed, Rachel is an unstoppable champion of non-violence for all living beings. And she bicycles to work.
As part of her MBCY training, Rachel began volunteering with JobStart in Raleigh - the yoga program for current women inmates. She is grateful for the weekly opportunity to introduce many new ideas under the giant umbrella of yoga: mindfulness, self-healing, movement, meditation, diet choices, and health.
Rachel also teaches a semester-long Alexander Technique course at the UNCG School of Music, Theatre, and Dance.
MBCY Program Coordinator / Yoga Teacher
Through poetry, Cory was able to realize and voice her experience as an Asian American adoptee. While earning her MFA at UNC-Greensboro, she worked as program coordinator and teacher for Write On! Greensboro, a non-profit dedicated to making space for creative expression for marginalized communities. Her thesis Echo and Instrument contemplated issues such as estrangement, inclusivity, exoticism as difference, and silence.
Upon graduating from UNC-Greensboro 2015, Cory moved to Durham, where she completed her MindBody Centering Yoga teacher training. She has continued to work with marginalized communities as MBCY teacher and program coordinator, connecting children across the globe through art, love, creativity, self-respect.
MBCY Manager / RYT 200 Yoga Teacher / LiveGlobally Liaison
As Public Anthropologist and Digital Marketing Consultant, and now a Yogi, Pablo specializes in media outreach and organizational development, aka a professional bridge builder between taking an idea and turning into an action. His work has involved targeting healthy, sustainable habits and figuring out how to implement them in various communities in as many creative ways as possible; i.e. art, youth modules, working networks, various cultural and educational events, and yoga classes.
His passions thrives from being part of a movement that pushes for action and works together in order to motivate, engage, and listen. He believes that in order to grow and truly have compassion for all, we need to continue promoting love and inspiring sustainable habits.
MBCY Art Director / RYT 200 Yoga Teacher
Daria is an environmental activist, artist, designer and founder of The Durham Originals, a brand + blog focused on inspiring lifestyle practices that promote wellbeing and the resiliency of Mother Earth. She was taught at a young age about nature, interconnectedness, and non-judgement and these themes can be seen in all aspects of her life and practice.
She discovered MindBody Centering Yoga through the community at Global Breath and quickly became a contributor, providing design and creative services for both the studio and MBCY.
A recent graduate of MBCY RYT 200, Daria uses yoga in her own life to support, inspire and grow her activist lifestyle. She sees hope for the future in the light of yoga and will persevere to bring it to all she encounters.
MBCY Consultant / LiveGlobally Liaison
DR. MAURICE WERNESS
MAURICE WERNESS, ND worked with Raleigh-based Akea to design a whole food nutritional supplement which incorporates the nutrients and foods consumed in the World's Longevity Hot Spots. He also closely compared the lifestyle choices of people there with the average American lifestyle and helped design a wellness protocol called the BluePrint for Life, which offers simple suggestions for integrating these lessons into our daily lives. The BluePrint for Life encompasses five principals: movement, nutrition, connection, relaxation and purpose. When applied concurrently these principals set the stage for optimal health.
Dr. Werness has dedicated his life to the research and prevention of chronic illnesses. He has developed an expertise in treating and preventing heart disease, high blood pressure and all forms of cardiovascular disease. Dr. Werness received his undergraduate degree from George Washington University and his Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University. He is the President for the Institute for Natural Medicine, has co-authored four books on natural healing and has long-studied the effects of nutrition on wellness and longevity.